How to Adapt and Modernise Without Killing the Cricket Goose

By Janice B Gordon | generation Y

Aug 06
T20 Cricket Innovating to Audience Janice B Gordon source ball-baseball-baseball-bat-1614992

I am by no means a connoisseur of Cricket, although I love the resurrection of the West Indian Cricket team in the world series.

“If we’d stuck to just Test cricket there is a danger of becoming extinct down the line,” said David Richardson, the ICC’s chief executive. Richardson is optimistic about the future of Test cricket and argues that the new audiences and players attracted to T20 only help strengthen rather than kill Test cricket.

Adapt to Changing Audience Preferences

The investment in all women sports teams has created role models for the previously ignored 50% of the global population.

Younger supporters follow sports personalities and not necessarily the team. When the sports personality moves to another team, so does the supporter. For all sports teams to survive and grow, they must invest in gaining younger supporters and adapting to their preferences.

The Millennial and Z generations are used to engaging directly with their role models and following reality programmes like ‘Love Island’ while at the same time engaging in debates online as events happen live. Suppliers and brands must adapt to the preferences and changing needs of their audiences.

“You have to be a lot more precise because you have no time to make adjustments. In Test matches you assess by sessions; in one-day Cricket, you assess by overs; in T20 cricket you assess by balls,” explains Phil Simmons, who coached West Indies to victory in last year’s World Twenty20.

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You Can Modernise Without Killing the Golden Goose

Innovations demand that innovators adapt their measurement of success to the changing market and audience, whether a supporter or customer. The West Indies completely reinvented the way the game of Cricket was played.

That West Indies team have a fair claim to being T20’s greatest ever side. On the field, they married unrivalled six-hitting depth with canny bowling that combined spin, pace and chicanery. What was less well-known was the use of data. Simmons said, “The thing about data is it’s how you use it. Our players used it very well.”

The West Indies team noted for changing the way T20 is played, has meant that T20 is no longer a secondary format, but a completely different game of Cricket. Players are now specialising in T20, leading players play 50 T20s a year, providing an abundance of data ripe for data-mining. Rather than T20 kill the golden goose of Test Cricket, it is attracting new audiences to Cricket.

Why Personalities and Influencers Matter in Sales

According to the influencer management platform Traackr, 72% of major brands say they are dedicating a sizable portion of their marketing budgets to influencers, those that have a strong relationship to their audience who can significantly sway decisions land purchasing habits. Influencer marketing has the next step in advertising and gaining more considerable influence. Because personalities can connect with people more profoundly and persuade potential customers more effectively than an advert on a page in a magazine Marketing is the process of communicating value to customers, and social media is a tool or channel for marketing to helps brands build their visibility and social currency. Social media helps brands reach millions of customers worldwide. Social engagement makes it easy to spread the word about your influence, your products, your mission and brand.

The real people with a view rather than Celebrities are what customers relate to, which attracts them to the brand. 73.4% of users will follow a brand because of their interest in the product or service.

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Engage by Building Your Personal Brand Personality

Personalities and influencers must be visible, engaging and have an active following. The highest-paid Cricketer is Virat Kohli at $25m, he has 30.9 million Twitter followers and is the only Cricketer to get listed on the Forbes top 100 highest-paid athletes in 2019.

Elon Musk, with 27.5 million followers, has more Twitter followers than his 3 of his companies (Tesla, SpaceX, and SolarCity) combined. The same is true of Richard Branson at 12.6 million (Virgin), Arianna Huffington (Thrive Global), Gary Vaynerchuck (VaynerMedia), they are all influencers with strong clearly defined Personalities demonstrated through their personal brands that they leverage to increase exposure and attract more customers for their company brand.

Managing your personal brand personality enables you to influence what other people say, think and do! It is crucial for business leaders not only sports personalities to connect with their audience of supporters and customers personally. Even in business to business (B2B), people connect with people.

Remember in business, thought leaders and experts may work with a company they are still, thought leaders and experts. Just as a sports personality can work with several teams and yet be known as a sports personality and brand ambassador and that drives sales to the brand they support.

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Not only has T20 not killed the golden goose but the goose has just woken up to the new world and is utilising all the social tools in the Cricket World Cup 2019, ICC brings more fans closer to the World Cup than before through its digital channels and digital Insiders.

The job is not yet done Thomas Bach, President of the International Olympic Committee said, “We have to go where the people are,” he tells more than 2,000 attendees, with the Prime Minister of Thailand in attendance. “And the people are leading digital lives.” Some 77% of social media users are under 35, he tells the audience, and sport needs to engage young people around the world.

By 2020, over 50% of the global workforce will be Millennials, these of our buyers and customer. How are you adapting your format to embrace your audience, changing demands and preferences?

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About the Author

Janice B Gordon helps enterprising companies adapt their sales approach and grow key customers. This has led her to create the popular Scale Your Sales framework. Janice is the Customer Growth Expert an Author, Educator and Consultant ranked 25 of the Top100 Global Business Influencer 2017. Contact Janice to talk about Scaling Your Sales.